Ban Ki-moon opens new 'UN City'

Fri, 05/07/13

Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon yesterday opened the new 'UN City' in Copenhagen. UN City is to be the new UN premises and aims to be 'a cutting-edge, environmentally friendly hub'. The building has been made possible through the investment and support of the people and Government of Denmark.

The new hi-tech building brings together eight agencies, enabling them to increase efficiency by combing resources. The organizations who will work in UN City are: UN Development Programme (UNDP); UN Environment Programme (UNEP); UN Office for Project Service (UNOPS); World Food Programme (WFP); UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN-Women); and World Health Organization (WHO).

Once complete, Mr. Ban said, UN City will house around 1,200 personnel from the organizations providing support to crucial humanitarian, peacebuilding and development operations around the world.

During this opening address, Mr Ban spoke about some of the key features of the new hub:

"From the rows of parked bicycles to the wind turbines out to sea, I see proof that we can tackle the climate challenges that face us.”

He continued: “From solar panels to seawater cooling and external metal blinds to regulate light and heat, UN City shows what can be achieved. Estimated energy consumption will be cut by more than half.

He also spoke about the work going on across the UN to lead the way on climate neutrality and to green it's operations through work on Greening the Blue:

"I am delighted to join with all of you for the official opening of this magnificent new home for the United Nations in Denmark.

I thank the Government and people of Denmark for their generous investment and longstanding support.

This beautiful and inspiring complex is a concrete symbol of your commitment to the United Nations. And it is an important contribution towards a more efficient, carbon-neutral UN.

Addressing climate change is a responsibility for all, and I am determined that the UN should walk the walk.In New York, the Capital Master Plan renovations will reduce energy consumption by 50 per cent.

The new additions to the UN Headquarters in Nairobi are an example of eco-friendly architecture fitted to the local environment.

And throughout the UN system, from peacekeeping to paper saving, we are working on Greening the Blue.

This building is – quite literally – a shining example."

To see the full story about the launch go to UN News Centre

To read Ban Ki Moon's full address go to UN.org

Photo courtesy: UN Photo